Sunday, November 22, 2009

Gratitude and Thanksgiving

On several occasions, while watching Oprah, she has mentioned that she keeps a gratitude journal. At the end of each day, she writes about those things for which she gives thanks.

I often express gratitude, but have rarely written it. However, I think I will start and I think that with Thanksgiving Day coming up, this is the perfect time to start.

Why? Scientists have researched gratitude and find that it plays an important role in many aspects of a person's life from good health to a sense of well-being to kindness and a feeling of being loved.

The scientists conducting the research studied several hundred people. They divided them into three groups and asked them to keep diaries. One group simply recorded the events of the day. A second group recorded those things for which they were grateful. The third group listed their unpleasant experiences.

Results showed that people in the the second group had less stress, exercised more, were more alert, more enthusiastic, had more energy, worked toward personal goals to a greater extent, and were less depressed.

Most religions promote gratitude and extol its virtues, but Dr. Michael McCollough, of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, and Dr. Robert Emmons, of the University of California at Davis, found that the beneficial results of giving thanks work independently of faith. It turns out any one, religious or faithful or spiritual or not, can enjoy the positive effects of gratitude.

Most people have so much for which to be, home, friends, and more. So give thanks everyday.

If you can't find anything to be thankful for, then perhaps this video at can help:


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